is the house republican conference now in their mentality on making a deal on the fiscal cliff, and is there reason for optimism if something does get produced from the senate sometime today? >> you know, i think there is reason for optimism, first of all, because, chris, you have to remember, we actually passed as part of our budget in the spring an alternative to this possess. we did another such bill in august, and then before we left prayer to plan b, we passed a third bill, so we're glad to see the senate move, and when they do, we'll have something to sink our teeth into. we might not necessarily accept it as-is. there will be some amending, i suppose, lots of debate, but i think that the house is ready to act. the difference between a senate proposal now and plan b last week is that this time we will not need to pass it only on republican votes. we'll have democrats who will be moving forward, and so i think you'll get a vote. >> let me follow-up on that, because i think it's an important point. john boehner's speakership took a hit. you can debate how big or how small.